humbleshoeshineboy

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How to Avoid Slavery

It makes us wince a bit when we see just how out of control our government has become and realize that there is no way of returning it to the principles that made it great. The Colonies separated in a bloody manner from a government that they felt was oppressive, only to find ourselves caught up in a bureaucracy that no human could have envisioned 200 yrs ago. We are taxed at every move, need permits and registration to own or use anything we have, and anything that was legal in George Washingtons day is illegal now and vice versa. In the US, not only is it illegal to not have health insurance, but its illegal to not have a permanent address. So by the time the government takes/taxes everything you have, its also illegal to not have more for them to take. Each year the Federal government adds nearly 40,000 new laws, not counting IRS, state, county , local and homeowners associations. Its entirely out of control.

It sounds hopeless doesn’t it? There is no new land left to discover and nowhere to escape. Or is there?

First, let me be clear, I am not anti-government or anything like that. I do believe that the place we jumped the tracks is when we began to rely on the government to do the things that Christians were once specialists in, serving our fellow man. Consider this, we have roughly 123,000 orphans in the US and 250,000,000 Christians at 350,000 churches. Why is that? If Christians were doing what Jesus commanded, there would be no need for government(multiple) agencies to handle this. If we were training our kids right, and helping others fill the gap, we wouldn’t have 2.2 million Americans in prison and a huge bureaucracy to deal with them. If we were caring for our neighbors, we wouldn’t have 109,631,000 Americans on welfare and that monster program. We would still need a lot of folks to run the country, but not 23.8 million federal employees, and that includes 95,000 IRS persons.

Here’s my message: Our government is out of control and will likely be till its demise. I’m saying that we can liberate ourselves from it by returning to our Christian ideals. We don’t need a government program to care for one another. If someone has a need, we step in, regardless what program is available. We need to take responsibility for one another. Perhaps we don’t need a new car, we could maybe buy a couple used ones and give one to a single mom. Maybe our old furniture could last another year and we could hand out a bunch of gift cards from a local grocery to folks who need it instead. Consider not going up north to the cabin this weekend and go visit a couple old folks in a home and let them show you the world.

Americans are absolutely wasting their lives on self gratification and finding it empty. Our society makes it possible to justify every greedy little thought you have, every desire that you have, you deserve. Fools, we’ve never been more obese physically and starving morally. Francis Schaeffer called it” Suffocating in the stench of a completely affluent society” in Death of a City. Perhaps we can begin to release self gratification and trade it for joy and inner peace. The government can take/tax away all your crap, but they can’t tax joy and inner peace. There may be a cold day coming that makes that a reality. I may become oppressed, but I will not become a worldly slave. I won’t give this world that power. Jim Elliot said” He is no fool that trades what he cannot keep for what he cannot lose.”

Friends, I can’t change the world, but I can make a difference to somebody and that’s a good place to start. If you’re hungry, I’m not sure if I can fill your fridge, but I can share my lasagna and a bunch of tomatoes in the garden. If your car is broke, I can’t buy you a new one but I can give you a lift to work. I can’t fix the world, but a can spare more than I have been for my persecuted brothers and sisters in other countries.That’s where it all starts, simple things that can make a difference. I’d really like to hear from you about the differences that you will make. Share on, friends

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Analysis Paralysis

This is a condition that often occurs in business when board members are too afraid to make a decision. Its cause is a total breakdown of leadership and the leaders inability to convey vision. It nearly exclusively occurs in a toxic work environment where people are staunchly afraid to make a decision, out of fear of rebuke or perhaps bruising their ego in case it doesn’t work out. At this point a committee is formed to insulate the decision makers and essentially pass the responsibility to someone else. The committee will often insulate themselves from responsibility by hiring a consultant. At the very least, this will significantly postpone any decision being made and perhaps the issue at hand will simply go away and not have to be dealt with anyway.

When you see a successful business doing this, sell your stock. No business has ever risen from indecision. Most businesses can survive a few bad calls, but committee’s and consultants are the kiss of death. Mind you, I”m not talking about market research and product testing and the like, I’m talking about having the facts in hand and passing the buck.

Can this occur in the church? I don’t mean the church as a whole, but an individual church? I believe it can. The signs are essentially the same. The board appoints a committee and the committee brings in a consultant. No deadline is set for a resolution. Church members see this as weak leadership and go looking for a church with leaders that they can follow. After all, could there really be followers without leaders? Now church membership dwindles and finance become tight, further limiting board options, essentially narrowing down the options available. A bad decision is sustainable, indecision is not survivable. Indecision is the antithesis of leadership.

A church has one more card in its deck than a business does, prayer. Now listen very carefully to exactly what I’m saying, prayer is integral to making any decision in church or in any aspect of the Christians life, however, it can be used as another “committee” tool. Using prayer as a pious tool for postponing a decision is sin. There are decisions that need to be made in a timely fashion and by claiming that a committee is waiting for “Gods direction” is likely full of bunk. That is suggesting that God is limited and weak and can only work in the lives of His people if one singular perfect choice is made. That in turn makes committee God , now doesn’t it? Quite a high view of ourselves, I’d say. If its Gods will, a raccoon can preach the greatest sermon ever heard and polar bear can run the greatest childrens ministry!  Mind you those aren’t suggestions, but we don’t have the power to limit God one bit, that’s all His business. Pray, absolutely, but lead with vision. Inspire people with the unapologetic strength that Jesus had, after all, can Jesus do it or not?

Leading isn’t easy and we often make things challenging for them. If you have good strong leaders in your church, in your family, or at your work, thank them and treat them with respect. We need to always keep them in our prayers so when the time comes, THEY WILL MAKE the best decisions. We often neglect them and assume they will always do the right thing, but when they make a mistake we need to be supportive as well. That’s what a good follower should do. So pray with me friends, Lord, through our leaders, bring it on. Bring us closer to you, in good times or bad, give us strength through our weakness and bravery through our cowardice. Never let us forget that you are God and we are not. Amen

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Who’s crazy now?

Remember the stereotype of a crazy person in sitcoms through the 1980’s? Among his(nearly always a man) acquired characteristics were extreme paranoia( shhh, they’re listening!), the belief that they were  Napoleon Bonaparte, and a belief that aluminum foil will protect them. Insensitive perhaps, but we  thought it was pretty funny. Looking back, time has proved them more right than wrong.

While I do know that 5 layers of aluminum foil will protect most of your electronics in case of a solar storm or EMP, I cant really explain the Napoleon thing.  Consider the paranoia aspect, you can’t really go anywhere without being recorded. This is certainly a celebrated thing when its used to catch crooks, but its a little unnerving for others of us. There are traffic cameras at most intersections, security cameras at all public buildings and parks, and public servants flying helicopters and drones to keep an eye on what you’re doing in your backyard.  Most stores and work places use them for security, inside and out, and places like Walmart use them to track your movements in their store for research. Yes, you are an unwilling, unpaid participant in their market research. Your cellphone keeps track of where you are and where you were, where and when you took a photo, who you spoke to and what you said, who you texted and what was said, and anything you’ve ever done a search for. Your home computer is monitored as well, providing researchers and government with a complete history of what  you’ve looked at and purchased online. Certainly any crook that is interested in you or your accounts now has access to all that info as well. Our federal, state and local government can track us, but is helpless to find the people stealing our money( Hmmm?) or the emails of the former head of our state department or IRS(again, Hmmm?). The government can force you to be drug tested, fingerprinted and your DNA put on file for any purpose they see fit, without just cause. All this if you haven’t committed a single crime. Just don’t let anyone catch you in public with a Bible or using any of that Jesus talk. We have allowed ourselves to become prisoners in an incredibly brief period of time. We have become quickly convinced that all of this is needed and good. 20 years ago this was crazy, now we aren’t even bothered by it and we all know what’s happening.

To be clear, I’m not anti-government. I’m just kicking back observing how life has changed. It seems like we have lost a bit of innocence and relaxation. Now we are hurried to buy more till we’re dead or in a nursing home, and at that point the government cashes in again. People are so quick to anger, and only express compassion in front of the judge. I don’t have the answers, but I know people weren’t meant to live this way. Its crazy and we can’t sustain this.

There is an observer more important than everything I listed above. God is watching too. Not for market research or waiting for you to stumble so He can catch you. He is on your side, Watching with love and encouragement, advice and redemption, always trying to lead you to peace. Peace isn’t always sedentary, it can be in jail for your faith, it can be speaking loudly for the weak, and it can be wiping butts in an old folks home. No matter what crazy things happen around us, our experience here is like a vapor. It doesn’t last and this isn’t our home. We may observe things around us that are unimaginable, rumors of war, things that human eyes have never seen, but don’t lose faith. We are not in a position of weakness. We have a Savior that isn’t slowed or surprised by all these things. If we don’t meet Him first, He’s coming to get us. I’m peacefully waiting for that day and you can check the monitors to prove it. Choose peace, friends.

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It’s not fair that I was born a sinner

That’s a pretty good point, isn’t it? After all, I was born a sinner and had no role in that situation. I didn’t cause it, but now I have to kiss God’s fanny to get out of this mess. How is that free will?

I totally love that question because it shows that people are thinking about hard things. Here’s the answer, there is no answer! Well, not a really simple one. Lets answer it in several ways.

First, while none of us are the direct cause our sinful nature, none of us can stop it either. Suppose God were to say to you that He was going to cancel out the penalty of original sin. That’s the part we aren’t directly responsible for causing. How long could you go without sinning?  Remember, zero sin is allowed in heaven, so one sin and you’re out. How far could you get?  Really? What if the thoughts in your head were played on a big screen for everyone to see? I wouldn’t make it 5minutes. Probably less. So it seems that if God started all over with us, we would do no better than Adam and Eve. It isn’t really that someone else was bad and we’re stuck paying a penalty for them, its that sin is part of our nature. God wouldn’t make us think bad thoughts to be displayed on the screen, we own that. We aren’t really the victim of someone else’s issue, someone else just got to it before us.

Secondly, consider this. Suppose a particular family line had long suffered from a genetic birth defect. How it started is simply a matter of history, the immediate situation is what needs to be done today to save the living. Now suppose a doctor was able to come up with a shot that would save the living, would the family be grateful for the doctor or angry with him? After all, they may feel that they have a right to be angry because they didn’t do anything to need this shot, it was all beyond their control. They didn’t cause it but are still afflicted. They could be thankful that there is a cure. I suppose they could simply deny that they have the problem, even though the symptoms are overwhelmingly obvious. Perhaps they could deny the rigid test methods like a good moral relativist.

See, we’re stuck with the condition of sin. We couldn’t get rid of it on our own if we had the chance. Jesus provided that cure and it cost Him a lot. Grace is easy on our end, but it was pretty brutal for Jesus. If there was another way, He was slaughtered for nothing. Could it be said that our free will is limited to two choices? Yes, I think that would be fair. You only have the choice of being saved or being doomed, you don’t have the option of not participating. You are forced to decide. Just like if you had the winning lottery ticket, your choice is to cash it in or throw it away. Why would anyone throw away eternal salvation? Why would anyone wait?  Keep thinking hard friends.

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This is not my home

Most of us have rented an apartment or home at some point in our lives. Generally most rentals are out of style and eventually clean, but a person would never put any of their own money in fixing up the place. Its just to get you by till you can afford your own place.

What if I were to tell you about a man that had a monthly lease on a home, but put a lot of his money into fixing it up? He’s nuts right?  It gets crazier. This fellow spent 65 years in this month to month rental. Here’s more crazy, he spent all the money he made and all his time fixing this rental place into quite a spectacle. It really became an obsession with him, consuming most of his time, while he neglected his family. Mind you, it was very nice and his dysfunctional family did enjoy the luxury, but the man couldn’t enjoy it because his obsession was insatiable. He’d no more get done with one room and the next room consumed him. It never ended. At least till the day that his landlord kicked him out. Now all those things that he put all his passion in were gone and his family despised him. Not only did he waste his life but he left his family in a horrible position. Nothing he did even mattered.

Pretty sad and pathetic story, isn’t it? If you want to learn more about this person, go grab a mirror. Yes, ladies too. We are all that foolish man! If you are a Christian, this is not your home. You don’t own this or anything in it. You didn’t make it and it can be taken away in an instant. Actually, it will be taken away in an instant. Atheist’s too, you aren’t taking anything with you either.

You have to ask yourself a few important questions. First, what are you devoting your life to? Are you devoting your life to acquiring a bunch of stuff that wont last? Do you have to work 80 hours a week to keep up the payments on all your crap? Most of your stuff will likely go to auction and sold to greedy little people for pennies on the dollar. Your treasures will be sold off to other “renters” who likely have the same useless covetous passion as you. No one cares. Imagine asking someone from 300yrs ago how hard they worked for “stuff” and where it is now. Excepting a few trinkets in a museum, all their stuff is gone, all laid to waste.

Lets change the question a bit. How could you make a positive difference in peoples lives, if you devoted all your time, energy and resources into helping the people? Not like a government program, but really getting together with some folks and lift them up. If we truly believe that Jesus loves everyone, why aren’t we passionate about loving them too? If you’re too chicken to talk about Jesus, but aren’t afraid to go to the bank and humble yourself for another loan, brother, your priorities are out of line! You won’t impress Jesus with your Escalade, but standing up for the weak and lost IS impressive. Jesus told us to do that. Live humble and share the kindness that Jesus shared with us. Refocus your vision on what you can do to help folks out and share with them how Jesus saved you. Take your focus off the sales ad and put it on a hurting brother or sister.

Friends, look around you right now. Everything that you see, does not belong to you. All you did was trade a piece of your life to hold on to it for a little while. This is not my home. Repeat it out loud, this is not my home. Say it often. Make financial decisions  only after saying that. Say it when you are at the store. Say it when you meet troubled folks. Say it when you are the troubled folks. This is where my brothers and sisters are right now, but we won’t be here long. Trouble won’t last. Jesus showed me the way and this is not our home.

I’m really looking forward to meeting my loved ones who have passed before me, and loved ones I’ve never even met. I’m looking forward to meeting you and bringing some lost friends home with me as well. Pray hard friends and I’ll see you back home.

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Christian Inflexibility

One of the criticisms of Christians today is that they’re rigid and wont change with the times. After all, the rest of society is changing, so why don’t Christian want to keep up?

Its important to realize that the reason Christian world view doesn’t change because our playbook doesn’t change. While societies, cultures and governments have come and gone, the Bible that we base our belief system on hasn’t changed for at least 1800 years. Significantly further back if the Torah and Old testament are considered. Even detractors should find some comfort in our stability.

So what about the latest “modern” societal ideas?

The real danger is in their foundation, they don’t have one. Liberalism and moral relativism that is getting shoved down everyone’s throats these days has no foundational belief at all. Nothing is absolutely true. If I make an error or I behave badly, someone can show me in Holy Scripture where I was wrong and tell me to straighten up. I am accountable to my standard of belief, the Bible.  Moral relativism militantly enforces the policy that there are no absolutes. Absolutely! There is no truth or absolute so nothing can really ever be wrong. The only sin they wont tolerate is offending someone and hurting their feelings.  What’s true for you is true for you and what’s true for me is true for me. You can never say someone else’s version of the truth is wrong. They have no accountability. They can also change what is true for them at any time. If truth is that adjustable, truth is the wrong descriptor. Truth cannot be a “temporary condition” based on opinion. Truth says if you jump off a barn, 100 times out of 100 you are gonna hit the ground. It isn’t based on my opinion or yours. Truth is true because its true, and there is a basis for that truth. When a Christians makes a statement it can be and should be, verified.

Forgive the poor example, but would you be more likely to vote for a Christian or a moral relativist? Even if you disagree with the Christian, you know where she/he stands today and tomorrow. A liberal moral relativist could tell you their stance on all the topics to get you to vote for them and totally do the opposite when elected. What did you expect? What was true for her yesterday isn’t true for her today. You have no basis to criticize, because you knew they had no foundation of truth. Quite a modern picture of our government, isn’t it?

We live in a fast evolving society that is based on never offending anyone but Christians(their feelings don’t count). So they have built a world view on the shifting sands of feelings. Its a world view that’s tough to pin down, other than the fact that you just cant be too liberal. Its like trying to nail Jello to the wall.  Since many folks want to live like wild dogs, to avoid moral conviction they simply become liberals. They’re like a puppy playing in the street, thinking how fun it is and laughing at all the folks trying to save them. We know that wont last  and its going to end badly.

Friends please examine the foundation for your beliefs. Christians learn about yours and liberals find some. The stakes are so high, for yourselves and generations of people around you. Don’t blow it, you don’t get another shot at this. This isn’t a dress rehearsal, this is the real show.  Study hard

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I believe in God, why do I need to read the Bible?

That’s a fair question. We’ve all heard the preachers tell us that all we have to do is believe to be saved, so why go through the work of reading it?  John 3:16 says so and that’s a pretty popular verse.

If we were to say that we believe in Queen Elizabeth, that doesn’t mean that we have any relationship with her. To get to know her we would have to learn about her. Otherwise you might as well say that you believe in a cabbage. So what? That means nothing. Satan believes in God, you haven’t impressed anyone. That’s just poser Christian talk.

Luke 11:25-28 tells us, in Jesus’ words, the greatest commandment.

” There was a scholar of the law who stood up to test him and said “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus said to him,”What is written in the law? How do you read it?”  He said in reply, ” You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart,  with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” He replied to him, ” You have answered correctly; do this and you will live”

Hmmm, that sounds like a lot more work. You see God isn’t interested in your theoretical belief. He wants a working relationship with you. Yup, a living active relationship. So how would that really work? God is so incredibly powerful, I don’t think we even have the capacity to understand Him. Still, if He was patient enough to teach us about Himself and love us enough to help us get closer, maybe we could get to know what He wants to reveal.

Friends God loved us so much that He sent a message that was so finely tuned that it applies to everyone today from every continent, language, race, and every person that has ever lived. One solitary message, 66 books written by 40 different authors, that reveals Himself to us. Not so much how powerful He is ( The creation of everything in existence only took 2 pages, 56 verses), but His tender vulnerable side. How He loves us and how we hurt Him and how far he went to save us from this horrible mess we’ve created. He wants to save us, but He won’t violate our free will (that wouldn’t be love if He forced it on us). We don’t have the capacity to understand how great His love is for us, but I want to get to know Him. I study my Bible to find Him. I can look back and see how He pursued me. The circumstances and the people that have crossed my path are no coincidence. I know me and with glassy eyes, I can tell you that I wasn’t worth His effort. The hound of Heaven saved me from a horror I can’t even understand.

Now the tables have turned, I’m chasing Him. He’s teaching me things that He wants me to know, although I don’t always understand at the time or like every challenge. I’m hunting Him down and He gave me the map to find Him. I won’t solidly grab hold of Him while I’m on earth, but when I die, He’s not getting out of my grasp and I’m not getting out of His. Not that fake, just for church stuff, this is real and personal. He is my Savior and my friend. He wants that type of relationship with you. He wrote you a love note too. Learn to love God with all your heart, being, strength, and mind.

Don’t be a fake conformist, if you believe in God and what He’s done for you, prove it. Go to church to learn about Him, not thinking that you did Him a favor by showing up and singing a couple songs. There is a time coming that the posers and the true followers will be divided up. Posers will be lost. Be a true follower, friend, He’s a good God. Trust and obey.

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Like or Love?

There seems to be a bit of confusion today about what love is and what like is. They are worlds apart. I occasionally listen to a radio show from Moody Radio called “Midday Connection”, and its generally women from a collegiate setting talking about issues that women relate to and how they “feel” about different topics. While it would be interesting to delve into why they think their feelings matter when talking about truth, the most annoying thing about the program is that they “love” everything. Love, love, love, they love everything! They cant go 30 seconds without using that word. So do they really love every book they read and every comment anyone makes? No, of course not, its demeaning to the word. If they love everything, that means they love nothing. The term that they most likely mean is that they like something, but what is the practical difference between love and like? Can they be interchanged and is our society mislead in the real world meanings of those words?

Love and like are both powerful, affirming words that we all enjoy hearing. They’re nearly always used in a positive context, but entirely different. Consider it this way, we use” like” to describe how something makes US feel. Its entirely selfish(although positive), all about us and subjective. As soon as something stops making us feel good, we don’t like it anymore. I like my car till it breaks down, then it has to be replaced by one I like better. Like serves me.

What we’re seeing in America today is a lot of people are getting married because they like each other. The Supreme Court has even made it possible for same sex people that “like” each other to get married and I’d hate to imagine what else is coming. Society is changing not only the definition of marriage, but the foundation of it. The Biblical foundation is love, not like.

Love is entirely different from like. Love is a commitment of servanthood. How many women getting married today are dreaming of serving her husband and putting him above her? Likely none. They’re in “like” with their groom, thinking about how he’s going to make her feel and all the stuff they’ll buy. Likewise, How many men are thinking of serving and cherishing their wives? Few I’d guess. Free sex and someone to do his laundry are on his mind. Shortly, car seats, Cheerio”s everywhere, and diapers show up and they are no longer in “like” and they head for their lawyers with a cheering crowd of friends giving bad advice. That’s modern marriage and its leaving a generation of wounded kids with no foundation or even belief in love. Todays love has become a cruel trick to them, not even believing in marriage as  sustainable.

Love is different in that there is no way out. When that woman who used to spend an hour getting ready for a date, now only has time to slip on sweat pants because she has to care for your kids, and you can look at that exhausted, disheveled woman and proudly say “That ones mine”, friend that’s love. When a woman is stretching their food budget for every penny because her husband decided to start his own business and things aren’t going too well, but she is dedicated to that man and will live broke with him rather that get out, that is love. When life gets ugly and things seem out of control and you’re both determined to get through it because you haven’t allowed any other option or “get out ” clause, that’s love. There isn’t a drop of selfish temporal “like” in it.

My hope for you friends is that you are able to discern between “like” and” love”. Never marry someone that you’re in a like relationship with. Demand, expect, and be more. There are generations of people that are counting on your wisdom and yes, love, not like, is the answer.

If you’ll allow me a personal moment, I’d like to honor my Father in law and Mother in law. They are celebrating 50 years of love and dedication. I’m a grateful beneficiary of that dedication through their lovely daughter. Thank you, Butch and Lily, for demonstrating what love is, and giving the rest us hope when we are weak. Much respect.

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Sodom Sentinel

I was very fortunate to locate a copy of the Sodom Sentinel newspaper from an antiquities dealer in Hampshire, England. Evolutionary biologists get most of their specimens from this dealer and he has a great reputation with them, so I’m certain that my newspaper is the real thing. It has the date of July 19, 2015BC.

Its quite fascinating actually. The headline reads “Men of God run out of Sodom”. According to the article, a minority group of religious zealots were trying to deny people the right to freely exercise their sexuality with whomever or whatever they choose. Thankfully the fundamentalist  bigots are gone. It was thought that after years of government crackdown and sensitivity training they would have adapted with society, but you how those tablet thumpers can be. There was a brief negotiation for some virgins that the perpetrators had bred, but the open minded folks marching were insistent on showing the perpetrators’ guests a new way of life. They escaped, but good riddance.

Also, there was an ecological section in the paper. Apparently science has saved the day with regards to dealing with those unwanted pregnancies that are really taking the pleasure out of their sexual revolution. An article titled “Make a profit from your Pleasure”. There is a local government project that will help you sell your unwanted baby’s parts to big corporations. Its a win for everyone as you’re paying for the agency with your taxes and you’d just throw that “tissue” away anyhow.” Recycle for Sodom” bumper stickers are available from your local NOW(National Organization of Witches) office.  Also noted was an article about government geologists trying to determine the source of that burning sulfur smell that has been getting stronger. Its expected that the government will institute more restrictive laws and assess heavier fines on local business.

On to the Sports section. It seems that a huge award for bravery has been given to Balal Raba a national sports hero for his becoming a heroine. Celebrations are ongoing. There doesn’t seem to be any sports scores. It doesn’t look like they keep score. but everyone seems happy about it anyway.

The Dating Classified section is divided into two parts, “Ya Wanna?” and “Hell Yeah!” I see that some names are listed in both columns. Not sure what to make of that.

The “Buy and Sell” section has quite an array of items, from a low mileage chariot ( with the CamelFax Report) to a “Darn Pretty Sheep” named Delilah from Gaza. You could get a camel load of salt delivered pretty cheap from “Salty Ham, your Unclean Provider”

It looks like higher taxes are on the way too. In a tiny paragraph below the Piggly-Wiggly ad it says that local officials voted themselves a raise and are exempt from any law they pass. Its sure hard to read that fine print.

OK, what does that have to do with us? If you take away the puns, that could be our newspaper for today. Some people like to say that the Bible is so old and it isn’t relevant in todays society. But you see, only the circumstances are different, the people aren’t any different from us. Sodoms sin was so grave(Gen 18:20) and ours isn’t much better is it? People have always been the same and that’s what the Bible addresses, the person. Folks in Sodom would fit right in with America and American folks with them. Change the dates and clothes and you couldn’t tell us apart.

While that is ominous enough, remember what Jesus said in Luke 17: 28-30. “Similarly as it was in the days of Lot: they were eating, drinking, buying, selling, planting, building;on the day when Lot left Sodom, fire and brimstone rained from the sky to destroy them all. So will it be the day the Son of Man is revealed.”  See to them it was just another day of self righteous sinning with no foreseeable consequence. We’re sinning like Sodom, with a boost from technology to make it easier, and America is convinced that it can get away with it. We believe that we have become superior to God or whatever myth keeps the dull of mind in their place. We live in a post Christian society that doesn’t want a Christian conscience taking away the joy of sin and its doing its best to purge society of that conscience. Listen to me very carefully, Sodom didn’t eliminate Gods existence or the consequences and neither can America.

Our only chance is for a Savior, someone to get us out before judgment hits. He promised and I have faith in His message, the Bible. Choose sides carefully friends, pray hard.

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Offensive Jesus?

Does the modern Christian man really behave like Jesus? The unfortunate image that most of us have of a Christian man isn’t manly at all. We think of a sickly, foppish little man who does what his wife tells him or else. At best he is meek and quiet, corralling his litter of kids, wearing a pastel shirt and a smart pair of slacks, never challenging anyone on their views or behavior. Christian men just don’t cause trouble because they might offend someone and they’ve been told that Jesus would never offend anyone. After all, the greatest crime in America today is to offend someone or hurt their feelings.

Jesus was nice to everyone and that is how a Christian man should act. He came to make everyone happy and feel good about ourselves!  What a load of crap!  Christian man, go to your wife’s purse and get your backbone. No, don’t ask for permission! Jesus was rude and crude and He didn’t care who you were, He told the truth! He stood up to the bullies and angrily called them names and offended them greatly. If you were weak, He had the backbone to stand up for you. If you were a weasel, He had the backbone to let you have it. He fought when He had to fight and wept when He had to weep. He was truth unleashed.  At no point did Jesus simply try to get along and make everyone happy. Quite frankly, He didn’t make many folks happy at all. He was confrontational and challenged most of their beliefs and expectations. Today many in society call Christians hypocrites and Jesus called the church people of His day hypocrites too. Can you imagine Jesus visiting a church today, tearing it apart like He did at the temple with the moneychangers?  Calling church folks white washed tombs? I’ll bet He has learned a few nastier words since then! Perhaps giving a sermon on being wise as serpents or how to be ready with a sword. I think people would be as scared of Jesus today as they were 2000 years ago! This who the passive men are supposed to be emulating? I’m not seeing it.

Jesus wasn’t nice, but was He good? Emphatically yes!  Nice has cowardice attached to it, fake to please. Good is based on truth. Jesus was all about truth and He never held back. 2000 years later, truth is still counter-cultural, it still offends.

You have to understand that there is no compassion in nice, only selfishness. Weak men don’t want to make waves  and take a stand. They would never confront anyone or risk hurting someone’s(gasp!) feelings. They do no good to anyone.

There is only compassion in truth. There is hope in truth and its worth fighting to be able to bring hope to the weak.. That is true kindness.  To be a man following Jesus, we have to stick our neck out, we have to be with people when they’re broken and stand up forcefully to the bullies. Stand up loudly for the truth that God so kindly gave us in Holy Scripture. Offer people true hope( not the con of a politician). Hiding cowardly in a corner, they aren’t being kind, they are just  selfish little cowards. Jesus will have a talk with them someday and I don’t want to be part of it.

If you are a follower of Jesus, learn about the real Jesus, not the soft feminized version. Dig into scripture and find Him friend. If you aren’t a follower because you cant be that passive and wimpy, neither could Jesus. He’s a pretty kick ass King and He is so worth following. Don’t be afraid, man up for an eternal cause. Join a gang that fears no one. Short term can get pretty rough, but the benefit package will blow you away!  Pray hard friend.

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